Across our union, nurses and healthcare workers are advocating for a $15/hour minimum wage. We know that while we are working to pass a state-wide minimum wage increase on the ballot, we need to use our union strength to raise our contract minimum wages.
Because of our strength and unity in bargaining, thousands of Washington state healthcare workers won $15 in our contracts. All members making less than $15 were moved immediately to $15/hour when we ratified our contracts, and no new staff will be hired at less than $15/hour.
We made this happen together. Regardless of job title or pay, nurses, professional, service, and technical staff stood up together to make our new contracts include $15. Nobody should have to work for less.
“Making $15 per hour makes a big difference. Before our last contract, our wages started out too low. Now there’s more that I can depend on. Now that the wages are decent I can consistently pay my bills and I don’t think about looking for another job anymore. It has impacted my life a lot. Its gives me hope that wages will keep getting better in the future.
To everyone who is making less than $15 per hour: Don’t be scared. Stand up for your rights. In the long run, raising wages won’t just help us but will help the whole community.” Wilma Jackson, Housekeeper, EVS, Highline Medical Center, Burien, WA
“When I started eight years ago I made $12.20. With two of us in my family working, we were just able to survive on those wages. It took me seven years to get to $15. That’s not a wage that has anyone living like kings, but it’s a good first step. People coming in now can start at a survivable wage and know we have four more years of job security. We fought hard to set a standard that we can be proud of. Other companies will look at Group Health and know that a $15 base wage will work.” Kevin Carter, Custodian, Group Health Cooperative, Tacoma, WA
“Getting $15 per hour at our hospital has made a big impact for me and many of my coworkers. For me personally it means I can afford to provide more things to my daughter and I have less stress when it comes down to affording the things my family needs. I am glad our union fought for the hospitals to recognize the value of the work we do and compensate us appropriately. I think all the hospitals in our state need to do the same” Diego Carrillo, Food and Nutrition Services, Northwest Hospital, Seattle, WA